Public Equipment Companies Managed Only 1.3% Gain First Quarter

The disparity in growth rates between the publicly reporting foodservice equipment companies and the broad E&S market continued in the first quarter of 2016. Combined sales of the six publicly reporting equipment companies rose only 1.3% first quarter, compared to the first quarter of 2015. In comparison, equipment sales rose 4.8% in the first quarter in the MAFSI Barometer, which reflects reports for manufacturers’ reps. Combined sales rose 2.2% in the first quarter for all eight public companies with the two supplies-oriented companies Libbey Foodservice and Carlisle Foodservice included.

The weak gain by the equipment companies can be attributed to a divestiture last year at Manitowoc Foodservice and a slowdown in key chain client growth at Standex Foodservice’s refrigeration group. Newly independent Manitowoc sales fell 5.8% because of the divestiture of Kysor Panel in 2015. The company reported organic growth of 1% in the quarter. Standex revenues fell 3.4% as the company’s key retail chain clients slowed their growth.

The other four equipment companies reported mostly moderate increases. Middleby’s foodservice sales rose 6.4% on solid gains in chain and international customers. Estimated sales for ITW’s Food Equipment Group rose 5.2%, with sales at both cooking and refrigeration sectors higher. Revenues at Dover Corp’s Unified Brands rose an estimated 3%. And Rational North America, which realigned its sales structure last year, saw a 25.1% gain first quarter.

The two public supplies-oriented companies posted strong gains in the quarter. Libbey Foodservice sales rose 8.9% and Carlisle Foodservice reported a 5.6% gain in sales.  

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